Internet Monk caught my eye yesterday with this piece about Martin Luther and the devil. Luther had a 'robust' approach to dealing with temptation, possibly a reaction against being over-scrupulous in his younger life. Luther struggled with depression and intrusive thoughts, but taught that the best way to deal with these was to distract yourself by having fun and downing a pint or two with the lads:
Be strong and cheerful and cast out those monstrous thoughts. Whenever the devil harasses you thus, seek the company of men or drink more, or joke and talk nonsense, or do some other merry thing. Sometimes we must drink more, sport, recreate ourselves, aye, and even sin a little to spite the devil, so that we leave him no place for troubling our consciences with trifles. We are conquered if we try to conscientiously not to sin at all.
So when the devil says to you, “Do not drink,” answer him: “I will drink, and right freely, just because you tell me not to.” One must always do what Satan forbids. What other cause do you think that I have for drinking so much strong drink, talking so freely and making merry so often, except that I wish to mock and harass the devil who is wont to mock and harass me.
The Monk himself concludes
Once we truly grasp God’s grace toward us in Christ, we will not live timidly or refuse to relish our Creator’s good gifts. For heaven’s sake, life is hard enough, sad enough, stressful enough. The world, the flesh, and the devil exert their pressures on our spirits every day. The remedies that bring us relief are not always “spiritual.” How could that possibly be? Our Savior, who had a reputation among the righteous as a glutton and winebibber, a friend of “sinners” who loved to party and enjoy gaiety and laughter around the table, won’t stand for it. (my emphasis)
On a similar theme, here's a piece on the place of beer in evangelism. Sort of.